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Reflective Summary Goldfields School - Using Visual Aids in Learning


Reflection Summary Goldfields - Using Visual Aids In Learning

Background: Goldfields School is a special school which relies on the daily implementation and use of visual aids within the classroom. ICTs have increasingly become an integral component of teachers’ planning, delivery of differentiated teaching and learning programmes, and the development of inclusional resources.

Context: For Visual aids to be embedded and cross curricula in all learning spaces/programmes by teachers, teacher aides, students, therapists and visiting specialists.

Aims/Purposes: ICTs provide instant visual support eg:  YouTube, Inprint2, Clicker 5, and Boardmaker, which allow learners access to lesson content and understanding of learning intentions. For students in mainstream who are visual, we know these resources are invaluable and more importantly, they are additional motivational tools for accessing highly differentiated learning.

I-Pads are now used in every classroom at Goldfields. For students with the most complex needs and disabilities, these tools have enabled them to explore and understand a wider range of basic learning concepts such as cause and effect.

Method/Interventions/Actions: Daily planning involves thinking how to incorporate the implementation of the Interactive Whiteboards (IWB) and the World Wide Web (WWW) across the curriculum.  From: morning timetables; to signing in,  hyperlinking from the timetables interactive activities, learning sign language, individual learning pages hyperlinked to level appropriate websites, following therapy programmes and much much more.

Summary of key results/Conclusions: Children who are not able to verbally communicate rely on tools that allow them to share their thinking, contribute to class discussions and express needs and wants.  These programmes and other assistive technologies such as Go-talks and Bigmacs, are a necessity to learning and teaching in our classrooms. Using the keyboard is another way for students to express their ideas in all curriculum areas; e.g. a child who struggles to write, a specially designed keyboard with lowercase letters and coloured keys provides an opportunity for him/her to communicate and produce legible work.

Recommendations or next steps: Further staff training for interactive whiteboard over holidays.  IWB installed in Primary 1 Classroom – this will mean every class then has one.  Clicker 6 will be installed in the near future on all school and staff PCs.  Initial training and trialling of this resource was carried out last term and further training for all staff is planned for early next year.